Hunger Polarity in the United States – Circa 2015

Majid Ali, M.D.

What Is the Root Cause of Hunger in the United States?

Growing Polarity Between Americans With Preserved Capacity for Work And Those Whose Such Capacity Has Been Robbed.

I anticipate strong, even vitriolic condemnation of the above words from many readers. My quick response: I was born in Pakistan and travelled in India and Bangladesh. I know something about Hunger. Americans can understand what hunger is only if they travel to those countries or visit Somalia. But the main point of this article is quite different.

The most degrading, debilitating, and devastating thing that can happen to a child is to see that her/his parents without capacity for work. No, I do not speak here of lack of job availability in the United States. It is the loss of capacity for work among an increasing number of Americans that is feeding the fires of polarity between people with work capacity (WC) and those who have been robbed of it (RC).  The New York City is swarming with taxis driven by Pakistinians, Bangla, Sikhs, and some other recent immigrants (not often from India or China). It is very uncommon to see drivers born in America.

Future of Children Without Work Capacity

I am sure there will be as many opinions on my view stated above as women and men polled on the city streets. I sidestep those opinions and ask a simple question: What may be done so that children of people without work capacity can be raised into young girls and boys, and young women and men, with work capacity?

It is profoundly saddening to observe that I have not heard or seen this crucial biologic issue discussed in the media.

Capacity for Work Is A Matter of Biology, Not Sociology

Biology does not recognize sociology, nor activism. Who robbed Americans of their work capacity? Who continues to do so now in ever-increasing numbers?

No notions of sociology or activism can effectively address problems created by altered biology.

For our children’s sake, we need to raise and address the question: What may be done so that children of people without work capacity can be raised into young girls and boys, and young women and men, with work capacity?

A 2015 report from the Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Foundation estimates that state and federal governments spend more than $150 billion a year on four key antipoverty programs used by working families: Medicaid, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, food stamps and the earned-income tax credit, which is specifically aimed at working families.

This disparity has helped propel the movement to raise the minimum wage and prompted efforts in a handful of states to recover public funds from employers of low-wage workers. In Connecticut, for example, a legislative proposal calls for large employers to pay a fee to the state for each worker who earns less than $15 an hour. In 2016, California will start publishing the names of employers that have more than 100 employees receiving Medicaid, and how much these companies cost the state in public assistance.

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